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An Oscar Peterson Christmas

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Album Review

Oscar Peterson takes it easy during his relaxed set. He had not completely recovered from his stroke but he was still an impressive pianist. Peterson, who is assisted by guitarist Lorne Lofsky, bassist David Young, and drummer Jerry Fuller, is joined by a 20-piece string section arranged and conducted by Rick Wilkins. The 14 holiday tunes (which include "God Rest Ye Merry Gentleman," "White Christmas," "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas") are given tasteful and lightly swinging treatments and there are guest appearances by vibraphonist Dave Samuels and flugelhornist Jack Schantz. But no real surprises or chancestaking occurs and the music is mostly just pleasant.

Biography

Born: 15 August 1925 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Oscar Peterson was one of the greatest piano players of all time. A pianist with phenomenal technique on the level of his idol, Art Tatum, Peterson's speed, dexterity, and ability to swing at any tempo were amazing. Very effective in small groups, jam sessions, and in accompanying singers, O.P. was at his absolute best when performing unaccompanied solos. His original style did not fall into any specific idiom. Like Erroll Garner and George Shearing, Peterson's distinctive playing formed during the...
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